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Thursday, March 18, 2010

There Should Be No Secret Government Files.

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Thu, Mar 18, 2010 at 11:36 AM

This week isn't just sunshine week in Portland. Journalists across the country are organizing Sunshine Week, a national initiative to promote openness in government and freedom of information.

top-secret-files.jpg

Journalists and regular citizens have the legal right to examine public records like salaries of public officials, emails between city employees and details of police reports. But people who hold onto these files can often make them hard to get, refusing to hand them over unless the paper pays an exorbitant processing fee or taking weeks to fill simple requests.

National Attorney General Eric Holder as well as our Oregon AG John Kroger have prioritized reforming public records law and local journalists this week are hosting a panel and a party to support sunnier records laws. Come hang out and talk about media! I'll see you at both events.

Party: Tonight at Berbati's Pan! 9 PM! Featuring excellent local band Swim, Swam Swum! Details here!

Panel: How open is Oregon's government? The Society of Professional journalists hosts a critical discussion at Multnomah County's Central Library this Saturday, March 20. Details here!

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